Hands that are not accustomed to kneading tight muscles can tire long before the muscles they are working on soften, whether they are your own or someone else’s. This is why we use massage tools.
There are plenty of hand held massage tools that are commercially available, from cheap plastic moulded dolphins to expensive vibrating electrical massage tables.
Then their are improvised massage tools such as tennis balls that you can roll your body against on the floor or walls.
Massage tools are good way to protect finger and thumb joints from repetitive strain. If you have never received professional massage training it is easy to make the mistake of over using your thumbs in particular.
Thumbsavers are a moulded plastic massage aid that costs less than $20 and are available online. I mainly use my thumbsaver on my own neck but they are useful for Self Massaging your hands and feet too.
If you have some experience and training in therapuetic massage, you will recognize a hand-held massage tool as an extension of your own body. If you have never learned to massage nor have ever even received one start out using Self massage gently and as instructed.
Massage over only your muscles never over your windpipe, breast tissue, on top of a bone or firmly over internal organs in your abdomen. The correct pressure to apply has a relaxing effect on the muscle. If you cannot relax into the pressure you are going too hard.
Nothing beats a pair of skilled strong hands but massaging yourself costs you nothing and is way better than going without. It is good to know how to make yourself feel better in a healthy way, knowledge is power.
Massage tools do not have the be hard objects pressed firmly into tight muscles. A soothing, soft caressing massage can be given and received with a dermal brush or even a fur glove to relax you.
Massage tools are more effective for massaging yourself than massaging others because you cant really be sure how much pressure you are applying when using it on someone else. Using a massage tool on your own body lets you know straight away if you need to go firmer or softer.
If you have any numbness in your body from disease or injury make sure you are not chafing your skin by rubbing too hard or too long.